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Open Access The Accumulation of Visceral Fat and Preventive Measures among the Elderly

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Visceral fat is a specific fat that is produced in the body, transformed into cholesterol, and circulated in the blood to other parts of the body. The circulated cholesterol usually in the form of low-density lipoproteins forms plaque on the walls of the arteries, thereby constricting and blocking them and preventing the free flow of nutrients to various vital organs in the body. Visceral fat is deleterious to the health of elderly people because it is mostly found in the region of the abdomen that houses vital organs such as the pancreas, liver, and digestive tract, and it further affects the normal functioning of hormones in the body. Globally, 15 million people die of a noncommunicable disease (NCD) annually between the age of 30 years and the age of 69 years, and there is an increase in NCD morbidity among people older than 70 years. Accumulated visceral fat in elderly people could have deleterious health consequences, as it is a predisposing factor for many other NCDs and chronic health conditions. Sedentary lifestyle, unhealthy eating, stress, and inactivity are the major causes of excessive visceral fat. However, measures to prevent the accumulation of visceral fat are straightforward, and impressive results are achieved with regular physical exercise, healthy diet choices, and proper stress management.
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Keywords: visceral fat; prevention; healthy diet; exercise; stress management

Affiliations: University of Ibadan

Appeared or available online: May 20, 2020

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